Last Updated:Friday - 09/24/2010
June 21, 2004
WCR Letters to the Editor
Maybe our neighbour is Cain
TheJune 7 editorial raises many good points worth pondering - the nature of society and individuality, nationality, community, good government, economy, healthcare, charity and social justice - all in the context of soccer volunteerism and the federal election.
While this is a rather intriguing blend of ideas, the overall tone is perhaps a bit too optimistic and therefore unrealistic. For various reasons our society is so deeply wounded and polarized, that Vanier's "community" seems like a pipe dream. We live in a society where we don't want to know our "neighbour," because we are afraid that he may turn out to be like Cain.
Volunteer soccer is indeed a good parallel for exploring what went wrong.
Several of my friends are soccer coaches and from what I hear the reality of soccer volunteerism is far from glorious.
Sadly, long gone are the days when the community was safe for the kids to really "play" outside and even the soccer coaches now apparently need a police background check.
A friendly pat on the back can be misconstrued as sexual predation, the coach must not touch the kid even if it is hurt, and if he does not put the right number of girls on the field he can be accused of sexual discrimination.
Strict guidelines cripple the enthusiasm of volunteers to the point of frustration and there is a lot of animosity among the parents. What is the worm responsible for this decay?
Government is not the heart of the people, but it can become its brain and limbs. It is the people's representative, its governing can make things better or worse. It can become like Hobbes' Leviathan, or by the virtuous customs and laws outlined by Tocqueville, "the people" can be prevented from becoming a Hamiltonian "great beast."
In its nature the Catholic Church and its theology is "conservative" because it tries to conserve the principles instituted by God. Until the Reformation and Renaissance, the Catholic Church was providing good moral guidance to the governments.
The libertine process of disintegration started when the Machiavellian princes threw away the sound ethical conduct soon after all sorts of "liberal" or "liberation" theologians started chipping away at the Rock of the Ages.
This process of "liberalization" is culminating today.
Cardinal John Henry Newman, one of the greatest theoreticians of knowledge, knew that to think correctly we must rely on our "illative" sense, or on the good common sense of beauty and righteousness guided by the authority of the conscience, Scriptures, tradition, proverbs and historical memories.
Liberals postulate the supremacy of human reason and hold Christianity in contempt, but to Newman this was diabolic possession, the sin of spiritual pride.
So that our children can safely play again, and that the soccer coaches can pat kids on the back for good effort, let us pray that in the upcoming election and beyond Canadians will use Newman's illative sense.
Speak out about your definition of marriage
The evangelical Christians have made the redefinition of marriage the prime focus of the coming election. They meet and pray that this will not become law. We Catholics could learn from them.
A very small but vociferous group of homosexuals and lesbians are attempting to change the definition of marriage. Now Jane will have two moms and Dick two dads. They push their agenda right down into our nursery schools and kindergartens.
Will the 99.5 per cent of heterosexuals allow this to happen? They are discriminating against us. Marriage has always been the union of one man and one woman. It was made like this by God and cannot be changed.
When a false agenda is being forced upon us, it is our duty to resist. Governments are often weak and accept everything that is politically correct. We, the electorate, must stand for what is right.
We will be attacked for our views, but Christians will always be persecuted. In his letter to Timothy, St. Paul wrote: "Indeed all who want to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted. But wicked people and imposters will go from bad to worse, deceiving others and being deceived. But as for you, continue in what you have learned and firmly believed."
We believe that the best way to deal with this problem is through prayer. We suggest that a day of adoration be held wherever possible in Canada this June. We could pray and worship, then stand back and let God work. He is always with us and he never stops surprising us with his wonders.
And, of course, we must remember to vote.
Energy costs skyrocket
We all know that Direct Energy is going to make big money on every gas contract that Alberta homeowners sign.
Direct Energy's contract price is way up there at $7.69 to $8.25 per gigajoule.
This compares with a regulated price from Atco in November 2001 of $3.136 per gigajoule, and on Jan. 15, 1995 a price of $1.123 per gigajoule.
So much for the Klein gas deregulation!
Words to describe the Klein government are not strong enough to express my disgust with them.
Consider also their record on deregulated electricity, on health care, on education, on the $400 million that they funnelled through to the U.S. packing plants instead of Alberta farmers on the BSE matter.
Hugh Mac Donald, Liberal MLA for Edmonton Gold Bar, has developed a policy on electricity for Alberta homeowners that will deliver power at cost to them - about four cents per kilowatt-hour compared to the current cost of about 6.5 to 7.0 cents.
He will develop a natural gas policy that will see Alberta homeowners in cities and on the farms pay a low price for their natural gas.
Gas for heating homes constitutes a very small percentage of total gas, so a policy with say a made-in-Alberta-price for gas for home heating is completely possible.
If Alberta voters do not find it in their best interests to vote Klein and his ilk out of office at the next election and put in an Alberta Liberal government whose members have demonstrated that they can develop good policies for Alberta citizens, then I would have to speculate that the voters are dumber than a sack of hammers.
Appreciate your pastor
I spent the weekend of June 5-6 in Bonnyville. The people there were very much in awe of their beloved priests, Father Hoanh Dinh from Vietnam and Father Ignacy Warias from Poland.
One of the parishioners told me how much they loved their priests and for the many reasons.
They were intelligent, good teachers, personable, able to talk to all ages and were totally in love with Jesus.
One parishioner said that her faith had grown since Father Warias arrived 10 months ago.
I agreed that I felt the same way about my present pastor (Father Patrick Baska) and also my previous pastors (the last two being Father Vic Perron and Father Clem Gauthier)-three different personalities but three spirit-filled pastoral men totally in love with Jesus, Mary and the saints.
I, for one, have taken the priesthood for granted. Wonderful, intelligent and personable priests have been part of my life ever since I was a small child.
With the ordination of Deacon Jim Corrigan to the priesthood on June 28, may we all take a moment to thank the Lord of the harvest for his great gift of the priesthood to our diocese and to our world. May we continue to pray for our priests and encourage young men to embrace the priesthood.
Bishop Hurley told seven Dominicans who were ordained in Washington on May 21, "The priesthood is an adventure (even in this day and age) which you will never regret."
Thank you Lord for the gift of your priesthood and for the men who partake in this adventure.
Copps did resign
Re: Don't rely on political promises by Renato Gandia(WCR, June 14).
In his article about politicians and promises, Mr. Gandia states: "Another example is former Prime Minister Jean Chretien's promise to abolish the goods and services tax when he ran in 1993. In fact, Sheila Copps even vowed to resign her seat if the government failed to live up to that promise."
What he fails to note is that Ms. Copps did, in fact, resign her seat - the only Canadian politician to ever do so for reneging on a promise. Fair balance would require that you state that in your article.